UNITED NATIONS Dec 29 (TNS): The UN Security Council has strongly condemned the “heinous and cowardly” terrorist attacks that took place in Kabul, killing more than 40 people and injuring at least 80.
“The members of the Security Council expressed their deepest sympathy and condolences to the families of the victims and to the Government of Afghanistan and they wished a speedy and full recovery to those who were injured,” the 15-member Council said in a statement.
Reaffirming that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security, the Council underlined the need to bring perpetrators, organizers, financiers and sponsors of these reprehensible acts of terrorism to justice.
It urged all states to cooperate actively with the government of Afghanistan and all other relevant authorities in this regard.
Earlier, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) also denounced the terrorist bombing on the Shia cultural centre in Kabul, calling the “targeted attack” on civilians yet another despicable crime in a year marked by unspeakable atrocities.
“Crimes like today’s strengthen our resolve to work with all Afghans who want peace to return to their country in 2018,” Toby Lanzer, the acting head of UNAMA, said in statement.
The attack occurred in Kabul’s Qalai Nazir neighbourhood, a predominantly Shi’a Muslim area, hitting the Tabayan Cultural Centre where civilians had gathered to commemorate a national day.
So far, about 100 casualties have been reported, including scores of civilians killed, according to reports. There are, however, fears the number may rise. Preliminary findings also indicate many children among the casualties.
Human rights teams from the UN Mission are on the ground to establish the facts, UNAMA said.
In the statement, Lanzer also expressed his sympathies with the families of those killed in the incident.
According to UNAMA, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or Da’esh), claimed responsibility for the attack. The Taliban issued a communique denying any involvement.